City honours ‘highway hero’ for bravery

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October 26, 2016
City honours ‘highway hero’ for bravery

REWARDED: JP Smith and Zain Small

Truck driver risks life to save drunk driver.

This brave bread delivery man risked his life when he saved a drunk driver from crashing into oncoming traffic.

Zain Small from Monte Vista was honoured for his heroism this week when the City of Cape Town presented him with a commendation for his bravery.

But the humble 25-year-old truck driver says he only did what he thought was right when he spotted the elderly white man in his white Jaguar driving erratically on the N1 last Tuesday.

Zain explains it was about 11.15pm and he had just done his last bread delivery in Paarl and was heading over the Plattekloof Bridge into town when he noticed the 71-year-old man driving into oncoming traffic at about 70km/* , avoiding collisions “by a hair’s breadth”.

“I immediately went after him and tried to get his attention, but he just kept on going. I flickered my lights to alert oncoming traffic and tried to get him to pull over, but he just ignored me and weaved through the traffic like it was normal. I could not believe my eyes,” he says.

“This man just drove, not even caring or thinking about the oncoming lights and what that could mean.”

Zain says it went on for about six kilometres.


CLOSE CALL: Zain helps driver in oncoming traffic on N1

The City’s CCTV cameras spotted the danger and it took Zain and 14 traffic officials to pull him over.

Zain says: “The driver was drunk out of his mind and claimed he was just looking for an exit off the highway.”

The City’s JP Smith commended Zain for his bravery.

“Despite numerous close calls, the driver was able to successfully prevent any injury and loss of life until the Jaguar could be apprehended, by no less than 14 officers, before the Koeberg interchange,” Smith says.

“The driver of the Jaguar was arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated, reckless and negligent driving, and possession of an unlicensed firearm.”

Zain says he would do it all over in a heartbeat: “I am glad nobody was hurt and that even that reckless man came out alive. It was worth the risk.”

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